Antiviral activity of arbidol against influenza A virus, respiratory syncytial virus, rhinovirus, coxsackie virus and adenovirus in vitro and in vivo

Arch Virol. 2007;152(8):1447-55. doi: 10.1007/s00705-007-0974-5. Epub 2007 May 14.


Arbidol, ethyl-6-bromo-4-[(dimethylamino)-methyl]-5-hydroxy-1-methyl-2-[(phenylthio)methyl]-in dole-3-carboxylate hydrochloride monohydrate, is an antiviral chemical agent. In this report, we studied the antiviral activity of arbidol against a panel of human respiratory viruses, namely influenza A virus (FLU-A, A/PR/8/34 H1N1), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), human rhinovirus type 14 (HRV 14), coxsackie virus B3 (CVB3) and adenovirus type 7 (AdV-7) in vitro in cell culture. Arbidol was found to present potent inhibitory activity against enveloped and non-enveloped RNA viruses, including FLU-A, RSV, HRV 14 and CVB3 when added before, during, or after viral infection, with 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) ranging from 2.7 to 13.8 microg/ml. However, arbidol showed selective antiviral activity against AdV-7, a DNA virus, only when added after infection (therapeutic index (TI) = 5.5). Orally administered arbidol at 50 or 100 mg/kg/day beginning 24 h pre-virus exposure for 6 days significantly reduced mean pulmonary virus yields and the rate of mortality in mice infected with FLU-A (A/PR/8/34 H1N1). Our results suggest that arbidol has the ability to elicit protective broad-spectrum antiviral activity against a number of human pathogenic respiratory viruses.

MeSH terms

  • Adenoviridae / drug effects*
  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents* / pharmacology
  • Antiviral Agents* / therapeutic use
  • Antiviral Agents* / toxicity
  • Cell Line
  • Enterovirus B, Human / drug effects
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Indoles* / pharmacology
  • Indoles* / therapeutic use
  • Indoles* / toxicity
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype / drug effects
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • RNA Viruses / drug effects*
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus, Human / drug effects
  • Respiratory Tract Infections* / drug therapy
  • Respiratory Tract Infections* / mortality
  • Respiratory Tract Infections* / virology
  • Rhinovirus / drug effects
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Virus Diseases* / drug therapy
  • Virus Diseases* / mortality
  • Virus Diseases* / virology


  • Antiviral Agents
  • Indoles
  • umifenovir